When I landed on the sunny shores of Maldives, I really understood why it was often called the “tropical paradise”, a must visit that many of my resort lover friends always told me. Y had decided only 2 months ago to join her group of friends to go to Maldives for a short getaway, and of course I didn’t miss out on it. We all stayed at Como Resort on Cocoa Islands, owned by Christina Ong, and it’s a little island with it’s own exclusive resort, spa, and a restaurant & bar.
We had to take a 45 mins journey on a speedboat to Cocoa Islands, a complimentary service provided by Como Resort since Y and the rest of her friends had Club 21 memberships. Good to get some perks from a membership.
Once we stepped out from the boat at the jetty, I saw how clear the water was, it almost felt unreal. It was so inviting, I actually didn’t mind just jumping into the water, there and then. Yes, you have to understand that I am a rather vain bear, never for the sun and sea, but I think Maldives changed my mind for the first time. Even the skies looked different here, so blue and I could see such nice fluffy clouds.
Once we checked in at the reception, one of the guest service officers brought us to our villas, and we realised to our surprise that ours was the biggest with a mezzanine floor where the bedroom is and very large toilet on the ground floor with a really large living room, which became the unofficial hangout place every night after dinner. It also meant that we paid the most…hmm I think that was the case, as Y couldn’t get any other villa other than this. But we think it was quite a nice chill stay, well worth that few days.
Well being typical Y and me, we weren’t used to just sitting around and doing nothing, so we went with some of our buddies to check out the diving centre to get some equipment for snorkelling as well as learn to dive. YL, WT and Y went ahead to do a basic introductory course on diving and actually went 11 metres deep into the sea with the 2 dive instructors, where they saw lots of fish, corals etc. I didn’t join them, and chose to stay in and watch some DVDs from the hotel. I think it’s great for Y to dive as she’s got a PADI license but just haven’t practiced it for the last 10 years, it was a good refresher for her.
I tried probably for 5 mins to snorkel and gave up, cos the water was a bit buoyant given I had to wear the life vest as well for safety, so I was struggling to swim most of the time then enjoying seeing the corals. YL and WT also said going diving was much better as it was calmer at that depth.
As our bunch of friends are rather chill, we ended up staying on the island during the whole trip which meant we ate breakfast, lunch and dinner at and from the same restaurant. My advice is if you were to make a week-long trip to Maldives, it pays to go island hopping, just to get some variety in food options. Dining in Maldives can be expensive if you eat at the hotels, but I read there’s some local options in the main island where it can be more affordable in eating, just that we didn’t have a chance to explore.
Always a lovely sight when we have breakfast at the restaurant.
On our first night in Maldives, they had a seafood buffet that we could choose from over the a la carte menu. When crustacean lovers like YL and I found out there was free flow of lobsters that we could dig into, we figured it’s more worth it to go for the buffet. Yes, we need to make our dollar stretch especially in an island where everything is rather expensive.
We were eating alfresco under almost pitch black surroundings, so forgive me for the bad picture of the lobster and prawns. The lobster and squid was especially delicious, that I went for 2nd helpings.
The last night of dinner was a delicious “Thali” dinner. Thalis are how traditional Indians eat at home, whereby they dine on platters of little bowls of different Indian dishes. And that’s how it was also presented to us, we had beautiful bowls of soups, curries, vegetable dahl, followed by dessert. Unfortunately for the poor lighting, the food pictures just looked horrible, but at least you can see below what was served as part of the dinner.
Our last day in Maldives, well we just ended up lazing around the beach – the rest of the group had a last attempt to get a sun tan, while I hid under the umbrella to avoid getting dark. I also had fun with some of the gals playing scrabble in the bar, on a beautiful wooden set by Scrabble, have never seen anything like that before, was so nice compared to the typical cardboard ones sold in the toy shops.
- May to October months tend to be the wetter months and is the monsoon period, and hence it can be pretty boring if one plans a trip there and all they get is rain – which eliminates all kind of sea bound activities. We figured that’s why they have tons of DVDs that we can rent for free, and also tons of board games in the bar area.
- It’s always good to bring a book, or if you have a tablet or Ipad, sync some movies and TV shows on that, bring a HDMI cable, and you can watch it in the villa on the TV. That’s what I did on one of the monsoon days. This is a must have to bring when I go on any trips especially to foreign countries.
- Bring your gym shoes so that you can also work out in the gym if you are one of those exercise bunnies that need to sweat it out even on a holiday.
I am not sure if I will return to Maldives again, but I think this was a really nice chill trip made perfect with good weather and great company. I wouldn’t mind doing one of these luxury resort getaways now and then for sure, if budget permits.